August 2007

Defeat at Lancaster

Thatcham travelled to The Giant Axe last night to face Unibond Leaguers Lancaster City and, despite losing, will be encouraged by the performance.
Goals from Carl Waters and Tom Entwhistle fired the Dolly Blues ahead only to see a late Lee Otway goal cut their lead in half, but in the pouring rain the visitors just couldn’t find the equaliser.

Match Preview: Shildon

Thatcham Town travel to County Durham tomorrow for the final game of the pre-season, against Northern League First Division club Shildon.
This season The Railwaymen are undefeated and have recorded some impressive results to boot, including a 10-1 victory over a SASSCO (organisers of North Eastern 6-a-side leagues) representative side, and a 6-1 victory at Northern League Division Two outfit, Birtley Town.
Shildon Athletic were formed in 1903 and abandoned the Athletic tag in 1923. Their heyday came in the thirties when they transferred from the North Eastern League to the Northern League in 1932, and they finished as Champions five times in the eight-years that followed.
Further league successes eluded them until 2002, when they championed the Northern League’s second division having been relegated three-years previous and have since established themselves in the First Division, finishing ninth last season to maintain the trend of mid-table finishes.
In 2004 Shildon shot to fame by battling through from the Pre-Qualifying round, (where they beat Workington Reds 2-1,) to the First Round of the FA-Cup and a glamour tie away to Notts County, though they couldn’t rise to occasion and lost 7-2 in Nottingham.

Defeat at Shildon but a success nevertheless

Thatcham Town were at the wrong end of a defeat on Saturday, but their manager is remaining philosophical. Darren Addison scored Thatcham’s sole goal as the Carlisle side went down 3-1 to Shildon, but speaking after the match with the Northern League side Gilly manager Jimmy McMurdo heralded the friendly, and the pre-season it rounded off, a success.
Asked if he was pleased with Saturdays outing he replied,
“Absolutely, it was fantastic. You don’t really gain much from winning six or seven nil against teams that are below you, and that’s why we’ve chosen to play against these higher teams like Shildon and Lancaster.
“These are friendlies and even if you do end up losing by five or six goals you will always learn more from playing against the higher opposition.”
And who can disagree with him. While other teams scrabble around for confidence boosting victories over teams of a lesser calibre Thatcham, who enter the season as First Division champions, have faith in their ability and look instead to pit themselves against the best on offer and will enter the season prepared for the challenge that lies ahead.
His side may have won only one of their four fixtures so far, but the Thatcham boss is certainly pleased with his pre-season preparations despite having had a less than certain fixture list, but admits he would still like to bring a couple more players to Thatcham Town.
“It’s been very good. Although we’ve lost 2-1 on Wednesday and 3-1 today, the lads have taken a lot of positives from the games and I’ve learnt that they are willing to battle for sixty or seventy minutes even when they’re losing, and when we take that into our league games it’ll do a lot of damage against the teams that are at the same level as us.
“Even so, I’m always looking at new players, and would like to bring on board anyone who will improve the squad. If someone is going to come in and take the club forward then you’ve got to look into that.”
Thatcham will hold a speakers evening with England and Everton legend Dave Watson this
Defeat at Lancaster
Thatcham travelled to The Giant Axe last night to face Unibond Leaguers Lancaster City and, despite losing, will be encouraged by the performance.
Goals from Carl Waters and Tom Entwhistle fired the Dolly Blues ahead only to see a late Lee Otway goal cut their lead in half, but in the pouring rain the visitors just couldn’t find the equaliser.

Opening Day Defeat

Thatcham Towns opening day took a dark turn when a lacklustre performance saw the side surrender to last seasons Premier Division Runners-up Gateshead Leam Lane, (formerly Wallsend),
At the home of Leam Rangers Youth FC Thatcham Town were sent packing after a dubious penalty award gave Craig McRobbie the perfect chance to open up a lead for the home side, and their advantage was doubled on sixty-seven minutes when Dan Olasoga hit a wonderful strike into the top right corner of the away goal.
Thatcham were threatening long before they pulled one back with Lee Otway looking dangerous up front and they got their just deserts in the eighty-first minute when Steve Skinner sailed a free kick around the wall and into helpless Gateshead keeper Michael Falcus’ net.
Both sides looked dangerous on the break and as Thatcham tried to push forward in those final few moments their hosts battled on towards our goal, but neither side was able to get a final mark as full time approached.

Back on track

Thatcham got their season back on track tonight in fine style, with a four-nil victory over neighbours Northbank Carlisle. Goals from Addison, Skinner and Otway saw Gilly take the bragging rights in an enthralling encounter at The Sheepmount, that lifts them to fifth place in the table, and while they may feel hard done by with the penalty award that saw Skinner knock home his first and his sides second, they can have no quarrels with the end result.
A match report is online now, but there will be no further updates to this website until the 21st, as I’m off down south for a week.

One more in the bag

Thatcham Town shot their way into second place tonight with a fine 3-1 victory over fellow Cumbrians, Carlisle City. After winning 2-0 at Ponteland on Saturday, a result that wasn’t covered on this site due to my absense, Thatcham entered the game confident that the true reflection on the side were the seasons victories, rather than the one defeat, and their belief was confirmed tonight as Lee Otway scored two, and set up the third for strike partner Dan Rayson to head home.
A packed ground welcomed the players to the field at half-six promptly, and they were treated to an exciting game controlled by an impressive referee, not afraid to work in tandem with his linesman.
With fans still coming through the turnstiles Lee Otway opened the scoring early in the first half by rounding the keeper, while his second was a delicate chip from eight yards. It looked to be a replica of his second that would secure his hat-trick, but it hadn’t the momentum to carry it through for a goal and was thus headed over the line by Dan Rayson.
In the other derby rivals, and next Wednesdays opponents, Harraby Catholic beat Northbank at the Sheepmount, while fellow promoted side Cramlington Town were 1-0 victors against ex-Northern League side and previous leaders, Alnwick Town. The most impressive result of the evening was over at basement club Peterlee Town, who again were on the wrong end of a humiliating scoreline, losing 5-0 to Walker Central.
Thatcham are now tied on nine points with Harraby Catholic, Cramlington, Alnwick Town and Walker Central in second place, while the only undefeated team is Gateshead Leam Lane, who lead the pack with twelve points.
Special thanks must be given to Stuart Graham, Tony Moynan and all the parents and players of the Thatcham Town FC Under 10s team, who provided the ball boys for the night. A match report will be online later.

Pride of Cumberland

Thatcham Town Football Club have been asked by the Cumberland FA, to represent the county in the Northern Counties Championships. The Championships are a knock-out competition similar to The FA Cup and offers progress to a national competition.
The draw for the first round of the cup, which is run on a knock-out basis, will be made soon and this website will keep you up to date with all the details. Speaking this morning of the invitation, secretary Mike Linden said that it was an honour to be asked to represent the county.

Top of the league

Thatcham Town were rocketed to the top of the division on Saturday afternoon, after goals from Danny Palmer and Daniel Rayson kept the points in Carlisle. Visitors, and fellow newcomers to the division, Cramlington Town, managed to reduce the deficit in the fifty-second minute through Rogerson after Danny Palmer begun the scoring with forty-minutes played and Daniel Rayson, playing his fourth game in five days, doubled the lead with his third goal for the club.
Although not a pretty game of football, the workmanlike performances of both sides ensured a competitive contest between two evenly matched sides, but one that, ultimately, rewarded the slightly superior side.
After the match Jimmy McMurdo commented that although it hadn’t been the best game of football, we got the win and sometimes that’s more important, and hopefully it will inspire the team on to an even better performance against local rivals Harraby Catholic Club, on Wednesday.

Ten man Thatcham share the spoils

Thatcham Towns unbeaten run stretched to five last night, as the eagerly anticipated showdown against Harraby Catholic Club faltered to a hard-earned draw at Edgehill Road.
The ever-dangerous Dan Rayson opened the scoring on sixty-one minutes as he rounded the keeper after seeing his chipped effort kept out by the outstretched hand of the Harraby stopper, but the visitors couldn’t hold onto their lead and only two minutes later the scores were even, as a home player rose above the Thatcham defence to head home from a cross from the left.
However, the main talking points of the evening came ten minutes later when referee Andrew Sproat controversially gave Thatcham’s Lee Otway his marching orders in less than clear circumstances, while two minutes later a penalty was awarded to the home side for supposed pushing in the box – though the tussles, part and parcel of the game, had gone unpunished for both sides in the previous seventy and following twenty minutes. Yet again Andrew Sproat made his diminutive figure the centre of attention by perplexing the crowds with odd and inconsistent decisions.

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